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Voicing concerns help university to change

This item originally appeared in the October 14, 2004 issue of The Tech Talk.

Recent actions taken to provide handicap access in Tolliver Hall, to make the new band uniforms optional and to upgrade Hale Hall hours prove Tech administration and student organizations are listening to your concerns.

In April of last year, students from the Association for Students with Disabilities voiced their opinion in a Letter to the Editor about the newly built Tolliver Hall and its lack of handicap-accessible entrances.

By the end of that month, the Student Government Association had already made plans to get $2,600 from its Special Projects Fund to provide an automatic door on the Centennial Plaza side of Tolliver Hall.

This pioneering effort has encouraged students to address other problems of handicap accessibility in other campus buildings. Hopefully Tech administration will respond to these problems as quickly as Tolliver Hall's.

Unanticipated problems with the new band uniforms became an issue at the Sept. 6 football game against Nevada. The 55-percent polyester and 45-percent wool uniforms in the above 90-degree heat caused some members of the Band of Pride to suffer from heat exhaustion. Four members were taken by ambulance to Lincoln General Hospital.

As a result, Dr. Jim Robken, band director and an assistant professor of music, met with Tech President Dr. Dan Reneau, and they decided the summer uniforms would be worn until cooler weather permitted the use of the new heavy material uniforms.

Reneau was also instrumental in extending the hours architecture and interior design students could use the studios in Hale Hall.

Students involved in the American Institute of Architecture Students and the American Society of Interior Designers met with Henry Stout, director of architecture; Dr. Ed Jacobs, dean of liberal arts and a professor of English; Dr. Kenneth Rea, vice president of academic affairs; and Reneau to voice their frustration concerning the limited hours available to work on classroom assignments in the studios.

After reviewing the pros and cons of keeping the building open longer, the administration chose academic integrity over additional energy costs.

All of these predicaments were brought to light by students who were affected by a miscommunication and chose to do something.

The Tech Talk encourages students who have complaints about campus facilities or policies to seek a resolution from Tech's "open-door policy."

We will continue to voice the concerns of the students in an effort to make necessary changes.

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